vegetable fried rice

When I cook rice, I usually make extra to have on hand for veggie burgers, burritos, soups, or some sort of snazzy rice.

Fried rice is a creative cooking experience I turn to when I haven't been grocery shopping, or when I have some odd veggies that need to be used up.

I scraped the bottom of the post holiday barrel for this batch... some withering mushrooms leftover from holiday appetizers, a couple of stray scallions, an egg, and some frozen veg mix and peas. It doesn't sound like much, but it's so satisfying to make something delicious out of nothing!

While I don't really make this the same way twice, I always first stir-fry the rice in peanut oil, add the good stuff, then finish with soy sauce and sesame oil.

2 T peanut oil
2 cups cooked brown rice
2 handfuls veg mix, thawed
(broccoli, cauliflower, carrots)
1/2 cup frozen peas, thawed
2 green onions, sliced
6 mushrooms, sliced
1/2 t salt
1 egg, lightly beaten
2 t soy sauce
1 1/2 t sesame oil

Heat the the peanut oil in a wok over medium-high heat. Add the cooked rice and stir-fry until lightly golden. Add the veggies and salt, and stir-fry until the veggies are tender but still crisp (5 minutes, or so).

Hollow out a circle in the center of the rice and add the egg. Cook, lightly scrambling, then stir the cooked egg into the rice mixture. Stir in the soy sauce and sesame oil.

This recipe is very forgiving and quick to come together with whatever is in the fridge, veganize it by ditching the egg. I've made it with tofu, shredded cabbage, fresh carrots, mung bean sprouts, water chestnuts, bamboo shoots, garlic, ginger, and possibly other things I can't remember right now. If using fresh veggies, blanch them ahead of time.

There isn't a whole lot of Chinese takeout here, so this is easily the best fried rice in town :)

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